The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between leaders’ expressed traits and their impact on their country’s COVID-19 outcomes. Some leaders are over…
The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between leaders’ expressed traits and their impact on their country’s COVID-19 outcomes. Some leaders are over relying on masculine traits and dismissing feminine traits. An alternative – androgynous leadership – supports leaders in drawing from the full portfolio of behaviors.
This paper has a theoretical approach using an extensive review of the literature.
Leaders can take a number of actions to fully embrace androgynous leadership. These actions include building a diverse “tempered” team, communicating with respect, recognizing the impact of framing and moving from autopilot to realizing their best androgynous self.
Research limitations include a critique of Bem’s framework as outdated and dichotomous; a categorization of feminine, masculine and neutral behaviors that is determined by the authors; and a focus on leadership style that does not take other dimensions, such as health-care systems, into account.
The authors propose that an “androgynous” leadership style has been used effectively by some political leaders around the globe in the COVID-19 crisis. The COVID-19 context has provided a laboratory for developing and building competence as androgynous leaders.
The mental capacity to look at a situation, pause and explicitly select effective behavior is necessary, but oftentimes, it is not put into practice. By not drawing from a larger portfolio of androgynous behaviors, the opportunity for leaders to their best work is missed.
There is an acknowledgement of the benefits of the combination of masculine and feminine leadership traits. There are also clear recommendations supporting leaders in developing their androgynous leadership skills.
Masayo Kodama, President, Reborn Kyoto NPO, believed foreign-aid food saved her and other Japanese from starvation after World War II. Kodama was determined to help others suffering in third world countries. After distributing emergency supplies in Cambodia, Kodama developed a new vision: teach impoverished people how to “fish” and they would feed themselves and their children for life. She decided to teach dressmaking skills to people in third-world countries. Kodama recruited volunteers in Japan and these women, in turn, collected and prepared silk from kimonos. Japanese volunteer seamstresses took the silk and supplies, traveled to such places as Vietnam and Yemen, and taught people how to create clothes suitable for sale in western markets of Japan and the US. Although the sale of products, along with small grants and private donations, yielded subsistent revenues for the nonprofit organization, Kodama wondered how to build her organization and to find a replacement for herself with so few resources.
A key challenge facing organizations today is sustainability in economic, environmental, and social arenas. The purpose of this paper is to examine flexible work…
A key challenge facing organizations today is sustainability in economic, environmental, and social arenas. The purpose of this paper is to examine flexible work arrangements (FWAs) a source of social sustainability.
Drawing from theoretical explanations of social sustainability, the authors explored opportunities and challenges of FWAs as social sustainability in the American workforce.
While FWAs allow organizations to “sustain” their workforce, diverse employees face challenges in accessing them, particularly across dimensions of gender, race, and class. The paper offers guiding principles for organizational leaders, including making flexibility an organizational norm, better understanding employees' lives outside of work, and creating metrics of social sustainability.
To extend knowledge on FWAs as a source of social sustainability, researchers should focus beyond managerial, professional, and mostly White women in America. What can be learned about employees of color, of lower socioeconomic levels, and those in location‐dependent jobs? What can be learned from companies and countries, who are leaders in providing flexible options?
Given the potential for FWAs to minimize tensions from conflicting demands of work and life, efforts to employ FWAs should be directed at the entire organization. This paper discusses the differential impact of FWAs across different groups of women and questions current organizational responses.
The paper expands the understanding of social sustainability to include an organization's human resources by examining the use of FWAs for diverse women, and by offering suggestions for practitioners and researchers interested in social sustainability.